Why Sylvester Stallone is an action hero archetype

29 September 2020
He has cemented his iconic status.
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Action heroes have come and gone with some frequency throughout Hollywood history, yet Sylvester Stallone, aka Sly, has managed to remain relevant with continued successes not only in acting, but writing and directing movies too. Clearly he is multitalented!

Stallone remains an action hero archetype and this is why we think so.

Lean and mean

1601379406 56 sylvester stallone as rambo in rambo 3

Having more muscles than fat is a prerequisite to be able to single-handedly fight off the bad guys. And it is clear that Sly has very little body fat, making him the perfect action hero to go out there and wrestle for justice. "Action movies in the '80s were a bombardment of viciousness, often featuring the singular figure taking on an entire establishment armed with nothing but the largest gun money can buy," reads the Esquire website.

"The excessiveness of these movies, in particular the grotesque and gratuitous Rambo sequels, is often lampooned today, but there still remains something strangely endearing about a freakishly large man with one-percent body fat, who has taken the time to oil himself up and wrap a bandana around his head before going on a one-man war against the Soviet Union, while proudly shouting puns in broken English."

Iconic roles

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1601379867 allone as rocky balboa outside the philadelphia museum of art statue resized

Rocky Balboa. John Rambo. These characters led two successful film franchises of, well, Rocky and Rambo. With Sly taking on these roles, it is difficult to imagine anyone else in these movies.

"Since that seminal motion picture, Rocky grew to a franchise of five sequels and in 2006 Stallone concluded the series with Rocky Balboa, a critical and audience success which resolutely confirmed both Stallone and Rocky as iconic cultural symbols," reads the actor's biography on his website. "In addition, to commemorate a character which has become as real as any living person to film-going audiences around the world, a statue of Rocky Balboa was placed at the foot of the now-famous steps of the Philadelphia Art Museum ..."

Sly has also penned The Expendables movie franchise, another action blockbuster.


1601380037 56 sylvester stallone as rambo in rambo last blood

Despite not being a very tall guy at 1.75 meters or so, he still looks menacing. How is that possible?

"A tip for you guys out there who perhaps, like me don't have the height advantage but want to create a powerful looking shape — train your traps and forearms. That's something I did for the film [The Expendables]. Something I've learned over the years, it creates the illusion of being much, much bigger," he says in a media report.

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Sources: Various
Images: Getty

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